English translation of Aiko’s “Fly With Me” and “Time Machine”

With the help of a Japanese professor, Google translate, and a small working knowledge of the language, I was able to piece together a simple translation of Aiko’s “Fly With Me” and “Time Machine”. This is a simple way for non-Japanese speakers to understand what the songs are about.

When I spoke with producer Dale Senaga on the phone earlier this year, he admitted he doesn’t speak Japanese and thus wouldn’t be able to provide an English translation for these songs. That’s okay. With the help of a Japanese professor, Google translate, and a small working knowledge of the language, I was able to piece together a simple translation of “Fly With Me” and “Time Machine”.

By no means is this a true representation of how Aiko (or Yoko Takahashi, who penned the words to “Time Machine”) intended the songs to be in English. This is merely a simple way for non-Japanese speakers to understand what the songs are about.

There are subtle nuances of the language that can only be picked up by native or learned speakers, so we’re lucky to have all the help we receive on these translations.  For example, “みるうちに” is most likely short for “みるみるうちに”, which means something like “in an instant” or “right before our very eyes”. Or this: there was a popular thief known as “Nezumi Kozo”, a.k.a. “The Rat Kid”, who lived in the early 19th century and acted as a sort of Robin Hood figure, stealing from the rich and giving to the poor.

If you have any suggestions or improvements for these translations, please leave a comment below.

Both songs are available digitally on Spotify, iTunes, etc., and also on 7″ vinyl.

 

FLY WITH ME (Japanese and English lyrics)
あー大空へ 二人飛んで 夢をつかもう
Together we fly to the sky and catch a dream

あーゆきすぎる
To go too far

わずらわしさ 小さなこと
Little annoyances

悩みなんか みんな忘れて
Forget all our troubles and

二人だけで 虹に 乗ろうよ
Let’s ride a rainbow, just the two of us

あーみるうちに
In a moment

人や家が遠くなるよ
People and houses will be far away

あー鳥になる
To become a bird

羽をひろげ 高く高く
Spread these wings and go higher and higher

言葉なんか みんな忘れて
Forget all the words and

二人だけで 虹に乗ろうよ
Let’s ride a rainbow, just the two of us

飛ぼうよ
Let’s fly…

Fly with me

あー消えてゆく
All will disappear

何もかもが過去の世界
Everything is in the past world

あー愛しあう
We love each other

熱い心 それが全て
Fully with passionate hearts

涙なんかみんな忘れて
Forget all the tears and

二人だけで 虹に乗ろうよ
Let’s ride a rainbow, just the two of us

飛ぼうよ
Let’s fly…

Fly with me
###

 

TIME MACHINE (Japanese and English lyrics)
もしも今生けるのが厭になったら
If I do not want to live now

後向き 宙返り 遠いふるさと
Spinning backwards, a distant hometown

ああ タイムマシン ねずみ小僧に
Time machine, Nezumi-kozo (a real life, Robin Hood-esque thief who lived in the Edo period)

ああタイムマシン 変身したい
Time machine, I want to transform

しのび足  大義賊  金をばらまき
With stealthy footsteps, master thief, make the money fly

世直しの人助け 気どってみたい
Help the poor and set the world aright

ああタイムマシン 夢の中だよ
It’s a time machine, in our dream

ああタイムマシン 何でも出来る
In our time machine, we can do anything

この腕に 宝物 握りしめたら
If you clench your treasure on this arm

やり直し もうー度 熱い人生
Redo a life of passion

泣き乍ら 暮してる 夜のちまたで
We live our lives while crying in the night

この世では無理なこと知っているけど
I know that it is impossible in this world

ああタイムマシン クレオパトラに
Time Machine, Cleopatra

ああタイムマシン 変身したい
Time machine, I want to transform

男達 悩ませて 燃える 瞳で
Tormented men with fire in their eyes

憧れ恋人をつかまえてみたい
I want to catch a longing lover

流される 現実の時計を止めて
By stopping the real clock that passes

穴だらけ大都会自中に泳ぎ
Swimming freely in a big city full of holes

ああタイムマシン恋をし乍ら
Time machine, always being in love with someone

ああタイムマシン思いのままに
Time machine, as you wish
###

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If you have any suggestions or improvements for these translations, please leave a comment below.

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